It isn’t all about you – but maybe some of it should be

Image courtesy of Ambro /

Image courtesy of Ambro / 

As I sat reviewing The Effective Detective’s outline for a presentation he was preparing, I admit that I felt some confusion. Rather than let it fester in my mind and cause me stress, I decided to broach the subject directly.

“Sir, there is a part of this presentation that I fear seems out-of-place with the general philosophy you have been enunciating practically since I met you,” I began hoping that my tone would not irritate The Detective.

“Very good Watson! I expect that what is causing you distress is the apparent conflict between presenting your business as a solution to your prospects needs rather than your own, and the initial part of my presentation that urges the participant to visualize what is best for them,” The Detective replied evenly, without a hint of irritation.

I had to admit that I had not expected him to make the connection without some additional prompting by me, but since he seemed to be open to discussion, I decided to press my luck.

“Exactly sir! Shouldn’t the major concern of any business be how their product/service even marketing content provide value to their prospects and buyers?”

“Right you are Watson, but the key phrase there is ‘the concern of the business’. Political campaign finance arguments aside, would you agree that a business is not a person?” The Detective pressed me back.

“Of course, sir.”

“However, you most likely would not argue that the composition of a business is at least part one or more persons?” The Detective waited for my answer with that slight smile that indicated he had sprung his trap, and the conversation was about to be completely under his control.

“No, I would not argue that point, sir.”

“Excellent Watson! Let us focus our discussion on the smaller types of businesses, privately owned, or even run by a sole proprietor. My point in the presentation is that, to put it in a way that is perhaps a tad maudlin, if there is no joy in the operation of the business or the delivery of the product or service, it may, in fact almost certainly will, negatively affect the business,” The Detective paused and lifted an eyebrow, signalling t me that he might be interested in hearing my thought or thoughts on the subject. I obliged him.

“So the mental well-being of said owner is critical to business success.” I said, attempting to summarize in a single short sentence what I had just heard.

“Short, succinct, and dead-on, Watson!” The Detective exclaimed happily. “The old expression ‘Money can’t buy happiness” is a bit off target. After all, having money can relieve a large number of the stresses that exist in our payment oriented society. However, if one finds the process of making that money distasteful or unfulfilling, it will generate a stress that will most certainly build over time, and is inescapable.

“Now mind you Watson, this does not necessarily mean you can blithely ‘follow your dreams’, or ‘do what you truly love’ and expect the money to flow. I would submit to you however, that if you cannot come up with a variation of ‘your love’ that brings you joy and is marketable, you must either expand your heart, your imagination, or perhaps both!

“Now then, time grows short and there are other aspects of the presentation I wish to hear your views on. Pray continue your perusal,” The Detective concluded, and we went back to work.

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